Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Exotic Mushroom Soup

I’ll admit it, I used to be afraid of dried mushrooms.  I’d see those little packages all lined up in an attractive display in the produce section of the local market, would eye them curiously and walk away.  There was just no way, I told myself, that those dried up things could ever rehydrate and again resemble a REAL mushroom, and they just couldn’t have much taste, could they?  Boy, was I wrong.  This was years ago, of course, in my pre-O-P days.  Now I keep a constant supply of them in my cabinets and panic when I get down to just one or two packages.  Dried mushrooms have helped me out of many a mushroom emergency when the fresh ones wrinkled up and abandoned me when I needed them the most.  As far as taste, once rehydrated the taste is intense and earthy, nutty and woodsy, and they can greatly enhance any recipe in which fresh mushrooms are to be used.  Case in point, this delicious mushroom soup that I put together in preparation for taking another dinner to dad. Is the soup good?  Well, let me put it to you this way, I sent him two meals and two appetizer servings of soup.  All of the soup was consumed with the first meal and I received an enthusiastic request for more.

Exotic Mushroom Soup

3 tablespoons butter
1 cup finely chopped onions
6 ounces crimini (baby bella) mushrooms, chopped
1 1/2–ounce package Melissa’s Dried Exotic Mushroom Medley
2-1/2 cups very warm water
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme, plus more for garnish
2 tablespoons brandy
1 tablespoon flour
2 teaspoons Jamison’s beef flavored soup base
¼ teaspoon Steak Seasoning (I used McCormick’s Montreal Steak Grill Mates)

Empty entire package of exotic mushrooms into a medium-sized bowl.   Cover with 2-1/2 cups of warm water.   Set aside and allow to rehydrate for 30-60 minutes.   

Strain mushrooms through a sieve lined with cheesecloth into a medium bowl.   Measure out 2 cups of the mushroom liquid; set aside.   Roughly chop the hydrated mushrooms; set aside.   Melt butter in medium pot over medium-high heat.  Add onions; sauté until golden, about 5 minutes.   Add all mushrooms and thyme; sauté until mushrooms begin to brown, about 6 minutes.   Add brandy; stir 30 seconds, then mix in flour and soup base.  Slowly stir in mushroom water; bring soup to boil.   Reduce heat; simmer uncovered 10 minutes.   Season with steak seasoning.  Ladle into small cups or ramekins.   Makes 4 appetizer servings.   Recipe may be doubled.


Mich Piece of Cake said...

Looks delicious and I like the idea of serving them in ramekins.

Kelly said...

Like you, I am a dried mushroom keeper, as well! What a lovely and delicious looking soup. And lucky me, I have everything on hand to make this tonight!

Carole said...

Hi there. This week's Food on Friday is all about mushrooms! So it would be great if you linked this in. This is the link . Have a good week.

Carole said...

Thanks for linking in. Cheers